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Whereis > TAS > Bicheno

Map of Bicheno, TAS 7215

Bicheno is a town on the east coast of Tasmania, Australia, 185 km north-east of Hobart on the Tasman Highway, with a population of 853. It is part of the municipality of Glamorgan/Spring Bay. The town is primarily a fishing port and a beach resort.

The town was named after James Ebenezer Bicheno, the British Colonial Secretary for Van Diemen's Land from 1843 to 1851.

The first historical reference to the place that was to become Bicheno was made by Brian May during his circumnavigation of Van Diemen's Land. He landed here (when it was known as Waubs Harbour) to dry his provisions. From 1803 Waubs Harbour was used as a whaling port. Bicheno was proclaimed a township in 1866. Bicheno Post Office opened as a receiving house on 1 January 1855.



Near the tennis courts is the grave of Wauba Debar (after whom Waub's Harbour was named), an aboriginal who was stolen from her tribe as a teenager to become a "sealer's woman". Her bravery in rescuing two sealers in a storm is commemorated by a headstone.

The hinterland was established for farming in the mid-1840s, which continues today. Coal was discovered in 1848. In 1854, the harbour was expanded to provide port facilities for the coal mines at Denison River. The coal was transported to the port via a 5‑km horse-drawn tramway.



The use of Bicheno as a coal port was short-lived. The discovery of gold in Victoria saw most of the residents depart in 1855 and for nearly a century, Bicheno became a sleepy little fishing village.
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